TJC women's soccer wins 2nd national championship - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

TJC women's soccer wins 2nd national championship

MELBOURNE. FL (TJC Athletics) - The Lady Apaches (24-0) closed out a perfect season with a 1-0 victory over Darton College (18-3-2) to claim the 2011 NJCAA Division I Women's Soccer National Championship this afternoon at Melbourne Central Catholic School (FL). 

This marks the 2nd National Championship in 3 years for the Lady Apaches in only 4 years of existence.

The first 45 minutes ended with an equalized no goals scored result with both teams taking 7 shots on goal each.  The only stat not equal at halftime favored Darton College's 3 corner kick attempts compared to the Lady Apaches only attempting 2 corners.

The Lady Apaches' closest attempt at a goal came with 10 minutes remaining in the half when Chelsea Palmer sailed a shot wide left when cleared for a one-on-one with Darton goalkeeper Sarah Story.

Coach Rose's comments on the 1st half:  "The wind was definitely a factor today.  It was against us in first half.  We struggled on goal kicks and punts into the wind.  The Darton goalkeeper has a strong kick and punt. Almost every punt was into our 18 box and a dangerous situation.  The girls kept working hard against a determined Darton team.  Both teams are very athletic and dangerous on offense.  To be honest I ¬think Darton had the best scoring opportunities in first half.  We were glad to get thru the first half 0-0 against wind."

The Lady Apaches scored the game's only goal with 36:30 left in regulation when Chelsea Palmer netted a header from Bianca Norman's lofted shot from 25 yards out.

Goalkeeper Hideka Shikata closed out the last Darton attack and saved an equalizer attempt with 9 minutes remaining by deflecting a shot off the top cross bar and bounced right back to grab a header attempt on the deflection.

Coach Rose's comments on 2nd half and game:  "Again, both teams had goal scoring opportunities to start the second half.  We made an adjustment at right back putting Bianca Norman there because their speed was hurting us.  We also wanted our outside backs to attack more.  It paid off when Bianca took her space and served a brilliant diagonal ball into the box and found Palmers head into goal.  I looked at clock and saw 36 minutes left.  The feeling was that there was too much time remaining and that one goal would not be enough.  We made another adjustment moving Lauren Emmerson to center back.  That move paid off too with her size and athleticism.  The girls did a great job holding off Darton's attack for the last 36 minutes.  What a great game to be a part of and not to mention, winning.  Darton has a great team and Ken Veilands is a good friend.  Hats off to their team for working hard and not quitting."

The 2011-2012 Lady Apache Sophomores close out their NJCAA career with an overall record of 41-1, 2010 National Championship Runner-Ups, 2010 & 2011 District E Champions, and the 2010 & 2011 Region XIV Champions.

Sophomore Katie Miller's comments on season, game, being a Lady Apache:  "This is the most amazing feeling winning nationals!  It was hard work but we pulled it off.  We have such a great team and it was so amazing playing with these girls this year.  I am truly blessed to have been  given the opportunity to be so close to home at a great school and amazing soccer program.  Coach Rose is such a great coach and we could not have won without him or the other great coaches!!! Shout out to everyone on the team, you did amazing and to my friend Bianca, she did great this tournament to step up her game and to set up the winning goal!  I'm going to miss TJC so much.  It was an amazing two years here and wouldn't trade it for anything."

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